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Illinois Democrats think they can magically cure the crime devastating Chicago with a few words

OpinionIllinois Democrats think they can magically cure the crime devastating Chicago with a few words

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Once again, our Illinois politicians believe they have the magic that will cure the crime that riddles our city of Chicago. I recently learned that our state’s Democratic lawmakers plan to introduce House Bill 4409 to amend the Illinois Crime Reduction Act of 2009 in order to rename “offenders” as “justice-impacted individuals.” That is right — with the magic of rewording, we will no longer have “offenders” or “criminals.” Instead, we will have “justice-impacted individuals” and the implication could not be clearer: rather than being seen as criminals who victimized society they will be seen as victims of the system.

I wish it were that simple. 

If it were, I could stop my work as a pastor who has tried to reform criminals in the Woodlawn neighborhood on the South Side for the last 20 years. I could stop construction on my massive Project H.O.O.D. community center designed to take back the neighborhood from criminals. But you and I know that this latest move by our state politicians is just more leftist foolishness.

ILLINOIS POLITICIANS AIM TO CHANGE WORD ‘OFFENDER’ TO ‘JUSTICE-IMPACTED INDIVIDUAL’

It makes me tired. I’m of watching how these liberals have sprinkled this magic dust in my neighborhood over and over — for the last seven decades. In the beginning, long before I arrived on the South Side to begin my ministry, they introduced welfare policies that took the father out of the home in exchange for government dependency. 

Year after year, they failed to provide us with sufficient schools and teachers — today, the nearby elementary school produces kids who can barely read or do math. And only several months ago, less than a year ago, Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson announced that he would magically achieve equity by shuttering some of the city’s best public high schools because it wouldn’t be fair to the Black kids in poor performing schools.

CHICAGO MAYOR TOUTS HIS ACHIEVEMENTS LEADING ‘GREATEST FREAKING CITY IN THE WORLD’

I wish I could laugh at this foolishness, but I can’t. I’m so tired of politicians claiming to care about us and then running away from the failures that their policies have caused. Instead, they prefer to sprinkle the magic dust of empty words, hoping to distract us. Sadly, it works too often.

Every single offender that I have encountered on the streets or in my church broke the law. They knew what the law was, and they crossed the line anyway. They hurt people, even killed people. You can’t erase these consequences with a turn of a phrase.

But what bothers me profoundly about the left is their consistent refusal to see people in my neighborhood as fully human. That is why calling criminals in my neighborhood “justice-impacted individuals” is just more of not seeing them as fully human.

By contrast, I see these fallen men and women for who they are: criminals. We have to focus on the reality of that. It may not be fair that many of them were born into great poverty and burdened with disadvantages, but that is no excuse to embark on the criminal path.

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Every single offender that I have encountered on the streets or in my church broke the law. They knew what the law was, and they crossed the line anyway. They hurt people, even killed people. You can’t erase these consequences with a turn of a phrase.

But what I believe in my heart is that you can reform a criminal into a law-abiding citizen. The first step begins with finding the individual hiding under that criminal armor. When you do that, you reconnect that individual to all the good things in life, especially to who they are as a person. 

Then you begin to show that individual the possible new pathways in life. I tell them over and over that it is possible for them to change their lives for the better — to become good employees, to become good parents, and to become good citizens. 

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This work is not easy or for the faint of heart. Not everyone succeeds, but I have seen many who have.  It is a beautiful thing to witness them spread their wings. 

No amount of liberal magic can ever replace the true and human work that desperately needs to be done in my community.

Follow along as Fox News checks in with Pastor Corey Brooks with a new Rooftop Revelation

For more information, please visit Project H.O.O.D.

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